(Guardian) Schoolgirls end Canterbury’s tradition of male-only singing

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Sixteen schoolgirls are to make history by ending a tradition of male-only choral singing at Canterbury Cathedral stretching back more than a thousand years.

The girls took part in their first full rehearsal this week and will make their debut, dressed in purple cassocks and white surplices, at evensong on 25 January. "It is all a completely new experience," said Ellen Spurling, 15, from Pett Bottom, near Canterbury, one of the choir. "I have not done anything like it. We have had choral arrangements at school but nothing like this."

The rehearsal was memorable, she said, but "to be able to sing like you have seen boys do, in the choir stalls, will be amazing".

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Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesChurch of England (CoE)* Christian Life / Church LifeLiturgy, Music, WorshipParish Ministry* Culture-WatchChildrenWomen

4 Comments
Posted January 11, 2014 at 9:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Adam 12 wrote:

I am sorry, but as a cultural ar tform, the sound of a men and boys choir is distinct and boys’ voices have a timbre and character that girls’ voices simply do not. While this is not a moral issue, of course, and worship is not a commodity it does run against centuries of English tradition and culture to go in this direction.

January 11, 8:15 pm | [comment link]
2. Archer_of_the_Forest wrote:

Anglicanism chucked Holy Tradition years ago.

January 11, 8:30 pm | [comment link]
3. Sarah wrote:

I agree with Adam 12.

January 12, 10:16 pm | [comment link]
4. Charles52 wrote:

I heard the Christmas concert of a world class boys choir.  It’s a unique and special sound.

January 13, 7:35 pm | [comment link]
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